Nikon Releases the AF-S NIKKOR 500 mm f/5.6E PF ED VR

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September 1, 2018 at 9:29 am  •  Posted in Gear & Reviews, Industry, New Products, News & Events, Press Release by  •  0 Comments

Nikon Canada has announced the release of the AF-S NIKKOR 500mm f/5.6E PF ED VR, a fixed focal length super-telephoto lens compatible with Nikon FX-format DSLR cameras. Here are more details from the press release.

The AF-S NIKKOR 500mm f/5.6E PF ED VR is a high-performance, FX-format, super-telephoto lens that supports 500mm focal length. The adoption of a Phase Fresnel (PF) lens element has significantly reduced the size and weight of the lens, making hand-held super-telephoto photography easier and more enjoyable.

With a maximum diameter of 106mm and length of 237mm, the AF-S NIKKOR 500mm f/5.6E PF ED VR, which weighs 1,460g (roughly the same weight as the AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/2.8E FL ED VR), is significantly lighter than previous 500mm lenses which can typically weigh up to more than 3,000g. The AF-S NIKKOR 500mm f/5.6E PF ED VR is designed with consideration to dust and drip-resistance, which in addition to the fluorine coat applied to the front lens surface, allows
greater agility when shooting.

The use of one Phase Fresnal (PF) lens element and three ED glass elements enables extremely sharp and detailed rendering that is compatible with high pixel-count digital cameras. In addition, the materials used in the new PF lens element have been developed effectively to reduce PF (diffraction) flare, allowing light sources to be reproduced in near-original colours. In combination with Nikon’s coating technologies, such as the Nano Crystal Coat, effective in controlling ghost and flare, extremely clear images are achieved.

AF speed has been increased by making lens elements in the focusing group lighter. The AF-S NIKKOR 500mm f/5.6E PF ED VR is equipped with a VR mechanism that offers camera shake compensation equivalent to a 4.0-stop* increase in shutter speed. The SPORT VR mode that has been adopted is especially effective when photographing fast-moving and unpredictable subjects such as wild birds, or in scenes such as sporting events. The stabilization of the image displayed in the viewfinder is also an effective feature for recording movies.

Additionally, the use of the Mount Adapter FTZ will allow the lens to be used with the Nikon Z 7 and Nikon Z 6 mirrorless cameras, also announced today. Users will be able to enjoy supertelephoto shooting at the 500mm focal length with a system that is more compact than ever before. Nikon is also planning to release the Dot Sight DF-M1, an accessory that is highly effective with
super-telephoto photography. With super-telephoto shooting, a narrow field of view in the viewfinder tends to be made visible – making it easy to lose track of the subject. The Dot Sight DFM1 makes it easy to keep track of the intended subject within the frame, even if the subject exhibits sudden movement.

PF (Phase Fresnel) Lens Elements
The PF lens, developed by Nikon, effectively compensates for chromatic aberration, utilizing the photo diffraction phenomenon*. It provides superior chromatic aberration compensation performance when combined with a normal glass lens. Compared to many general camera lenses that employ an optical system using the photorefractive phenomenon, a remarkably compact and
lightweight body can be attained with fewer lens elements.

*Diffraction phenomenon: Light has characteristics as a waveform. When a waveform faces an obstacle, it attempts to go around and behind it, and this characteristic is referred to as diffraction. Diffraction causes chromatic dispersion in the reverse order of refraction.

Primary features

  • Significantly smaller and lighter with the adoption of a Phase Fresnel lens element, making 500mm hand-held super-telephoto photography easier and more enjoyable
  • Designed with consideration of dust- and drip-resistance; fluorine coat applied to front lens surface, effectively repelling water droplets, grease, and dirt
  • Adoption of one PF lens element and three ED glass elements for extremely sharp and detailed rendering, compatible with high pixel-count digital cameras
  • Optical performance that is not compromised with the use of the TC-14E III AF-S teleconverter
  • Materials used in the new PF lens element effectively control PF (diffraction) flare
  • Ghost and flare effectively suppressed with the adoption of the Nano Crystal Coat, enabling clear images
  • AF speed increased by making lens elements in the focusing group lighter
  • Equipped with a VR mechanism that offers camera shake compensation equivalent to a 4-stop* increase in shutter speed, in two modes: NORMAL and SPORT
  • Electromagnetic diaphragm mechanism adopted for extremely precise aperture control

Optional accessories
Nikon will release the Dot Sight DF-M1 (available separately), an accessory that is highly effective with super-telephoto photography. This accessory makes it easy to keep track of the intended subject, even if the subject exhibits sudden movement.

Price and Availability
The AF-S NIKKOR 500mm f/5.6E PF ED VR will have a manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP) of $4,899.95 and will be available in September 2018.

*Measured in accordance with CIPA standards in NORMAL mode when a digital SLR camera equipped with a fullframe,
35mm film equivalent image sensor is used.

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